Because I am not a nice person, it amuses me that the NYTimes is primly reporting “G.O.P. Hopes for Unity May Be Upset by Ben Carson“:
… With former Gov. Jeb Bush of Florida moving closer to declaring his candidacy, and the Republican establishment determined not to repeat the mistakes of the lengthy nominating fight of 2012, the rise of Mr. Carson suggests the best-laid plans of the party for 2016 may not go as smoothly as desired.
Even as Mr. Bush began to quietly line up donors, and the attention of the news media turned last week to policy disputes over Cuba between two other potential high-profile contenders, Senators Marco Rubio and Rand Paul, Mr. Carson was riding an under-the-radar groundswell.
In Iowa, which holds the first voting for nominees, a local chairman or chairwoman has been recruited in all 99 counties, something no other potential candidate can claim. A national committee to draft Mr. Carson into the race, Run Ben Run, has raised more money than the high-profile outfit urging voters to get “Ready for Hillary.”
Though few Republican strategists expect Mr. Carson, 63, to be the nominee, they acknowledge his potential to throw a wrench into the establishment’s desire to unify early, and the danger of turning off moderates if his divisive views continue to gain traction.
Mr. Carson has built a profile on heavy exposure as a commentator on Fox News, an uplifting biography and, especially, intemperate criticism of the Age of Obama that might seem to disqualify a major-party candidate…
His unfiltered remarks are embraced by parts of the Republican base in inverse proportion to the fits of outrage they inspire on the left. “To the base who are looking for someone completely different to shake things up, that probably makes them more of a fan,” said Craig Robinson, a former political director of the Iowa Republican Party.
In Iowa, which has a history of rewarding nontraditional candidates, strategists regard Mr. Carson as more formidable than outsiders in the 2012 race like the pizza executive Herman Cain and former Senator Rick Santorum, who won the 2012 caucus.
An October poll of likely Republican caucusgoers in Iowa by The Des Moines Register and Bloomberg Politics put Mr. Carson in second place, with 11 percent, behind Mitt Romney.
A Fox News survey released last week of Republican voters nationally put Mr. Carson in the middle of a crowded field behind Mr. Romney and Mr. Bush…
Back in 2011, I gleefully fantasized about Herman Cain doing well enough among the GOP “protest voters” to force Mitt Romney to offer him the VP slot, because watching America’s Whitest Vulture Capitalist share a stage with the 9-9-9 Pizza King was so rich in comic potential. A Jeb Bush/Ben Carson ticket doesn’t have anywhere near the same comedic promise, but it would still be entertaining to watch the genuinely self-made pediatric neurosurgeon Dr. Carson respond to comparisons against a man whose entire career has been based on being born to the right parents…
Apart from toasting confusion to our enemies, what’s on the agenda as we start another (mostly abbreviated) work week?
I got nuthin to do but fool around the house and watch them cut down the huge oak that hovers over the house behind us.
Ah, fresh Open Thread (cracks knuckles).
It’s that time again.
Orange you glad this isn’t yourneighbor?
This is a scarce, pre Christmas day off, so I should still be asleep, but the physiology of the aging male has intervened. Once I showed evidence of life, two cats have decided that is is close enough to their normal breakfast that they are engaged in subdued (for now) psychological manipulation to move me toward the kitchen.
I decided to sit on the edge of the bed and click on Balloon-Juice just to show them who is boss.
@Keith G: I got up for the usual and found that my bride had moved to the couch with the big dog. I go, the gets up and go back to bed and I take my spot. Not the best pattern but it’s ours.
No saunter to the bakery?
In the wake of the Rosebud MO racist BS, I put “Black Lives Matter” on the back of my truck. My son thought, that living out here in Washington Co, I was being “antagonistic.” I really didn’t expect to hear anything from anyone as 99.9% of the racists out here don’t have even a quarter the balls of their Confederate forerunners.
Now after NYC, I wonder if I have to spell out the obvious and put “Cop Lives Matter” on it too, because it seems some people think one negates the other.
@Keith G: I too am programmed to be up and off to work at this time of day, but I am going to do my best to find a way to go back to sleep until the sun comes up. So far the search is fruitless.
Theatre update: One of our cast members left a voice mail message yesterday morning; she had a 101 F temp and coughing badly. Fortunately we were able to get a replacement — the girlfriend of the other actor, and she fit in fine; she read the script off a clipboard that was already in the play as a prop. If you didn’t know, you couldn’t tell. It all went very well and a lot of people told me it was the best of the lot. The show must go on, and it did.
@NotMax: 6:30, they don’t open until 7.
Fixin’ to try to maybe get some sleep, or at least rest the eyes for a bit, if this danged on-again, off-again chest congestion will let me lie down for more than ten minutes. Merely a minor annoyance during the day, it kicks in full throttle late at night.
So the more the left is outraged, the less the wingnuts like him? ITYM “in DIRECT proportion”.
I know a NYTimes writer is not expected to be a math major, but don’t use a phrase like “inverse proportion” unless you have some clue what it means.
OK, pedantry over.
@NotMax: Ugh, I guess it’s not related to the furnace?
The word surreal is overused but sometimes…
This better policing movement has been Palestined. You go from the moral high ground of righteous indignation to being on the defensive overnight. In Palestine, hundreds of women and children can be murdered in their sleep, stirring what passes for a conscience among some people, and then one overblown firework lands near an Israeli house and immediately the dynamic and discourse changes. Better get some valium to ride this out; it’ll start like this:
“Are you saying that cops don’t have a right to defend themselves!? What is a cop supposed to do if he’s sitting in a car when some black kid in a hoodie comes up behind? Wait to get shot?!”
It’s already over.
@wilfred: Good, no need for you to write this then.
I like news from the world of science, so Google has alerted me about an article in Smithonian entitled, Is String Theory About to Unravel?
Now, the headline is clickbait since the article provides no new scientific thought on the issue. It is purely a recap.
But what I found cool was the comment section where science nerds did their best to recreate a B-J thread on Greenwald/Snowden
Second comment in
I love the smell of nerd snark in the morning.
Could only take 2 minutes of Joe Scar’s bloviating.
On the positive side, got my Note8 revived.
@BillinGlendaleCA: You didn’t make it to Halperin and the Joe agreeing that the comments by Lynch and others were totally out of line, unnecessary and inflammatory?
Nowhere in that NYT piece did I detect the name Cruz, says I.
If there was ever a guy who would joyfully piss all over “the establishment’s desire to unify early”, Senator T. Cruz is that man. Going way out on a limb, I’m going to guess that Ted sees presidential timber when he looks in the mirror to shave every monring. I find it interesting that The Senate’s Most Detested Man is never mentioned as a contender.
Sorry for the brief absence there; I forgot I was supposed to drop off a friend at the hospital this morning for a procedure. Cell phone rang: “Are you on the way?” Yikes! Grabbed the pants, glasses, and keys and we made it there right at the time he was supposed to check in.
@BillinGlendaleCA: They did, I knew they would. It certainly wasn’t the same as his rant but still. He’s now comparing the anti-police sentiment with how we were treated when we came home.
Being that I’m being oppressed by the WP(by not being allowed to edit my comment). I just said “Fuck you Joe” and closed the TV window on my computer.
Nice, Thomas Roberts is now making sure that this killer had mental issues just like the WHITE guys in Colorado and Newton.
@raven: Good on Thomas(aka the guy with 2 first names).
@raven: Who is Thomas Roberts?
@OzarkHillbilly: He’s been a sort of second string co-host on the show for a while. He’s openly gay, really smart and looks like a movie star. He often takes a progressive view and doesn’t get pushed around. He almost makes it worth watching,
@raven: I actually didn’t realize he was gay until MHP had a segment on marriage and Thomas was showing his wedding pics. I was like, Oh he and his best man. A second later, wait a minute… Oh that’s his hubby.
@raven: OK, thanx. Heading for STL, ya’ll be safe now.
I’d argue with ‘fits of outrage on the left’. Fits of amusement, maybe, at first.
I donno….maybe a soap star (character name Case or Chase).
I think his eyes and mouth are a bit too small for the big screen.
Doctors with some pretty extreme rightwing views who go into politics such as Ben Carson, supposedly a brilliant neurosurgeon, ophthalmologist Rand Paul, Ob-gyn Tom Coburn, GP Paul Broun, etc. I’m sure I’ll never understand former doctors turning to actively working to worsen the health and well-being of Americans. What I do know is that if I learned that a doctor treating me for anything was a loony, Fox watcher, conspiracy theory, Bible thumper wingnut I would change doctors asap.
I was just reading some documentation for this home automation system that I’m using and I noticed that they use the word “truthiness” twice. Thank you Stephen Colbert. BTW, FYWP doesn’t think it’s a word.
… heart and lung transplant surgeon Bill Frist, orthopedic surgeon Tom Price, Ob-Gyn Ron Paul ….
@bemused: You could also add Ob-gyn Ron Paul to that list.
Slow again, beat to the punch by SiubhanDuinne.
Likely aggravated by it; this congestion showed up about 10 days or so ago as an adjunct to the usual sinus troubles and has waxed and waned since. No coughing spasms associated with it, at least, just phlegm city.
There’s something going around the island (as is always the case during peak tourist season), and this seems to be a mild but persistent form of whatever that something is. No fever, no sore throat.
The large number of wingnut current or former legislators is horrifying.
It’s not the Republicans we need to worry about, it’s Madame Walmart. If she gets in expect endless wars on behalf of Israel and the MIC.
Enhanced Voting Techniques
In other words the base wants a man-child to throw a tantrum for them.
Iowa Old Lady
@Mustang Bobby: I’ll bet the phone call got everybody’s heart pumping. Glad the replacement worked out.
And who could forget the odious Scott DesJarlais? From the Wikipedia section on Personal Life:
DesJarlais and his second wife, Amy, have three children. They live in Jasper, a town about 30 miles west of Chattanooga, in Marion County. DesJarlais divorced his first wife, Susan, in 2001; they have one child.
On November 15, 2012—two weeks after the election—the Chattanooga Times Free Press obtained a transcript of DesJarlais’ 2001 divorce proceeding with his first wife. It revealed that DesJarlais had admitted under oath to at least six sexual relationships with people he came in contact with while chief of staff at Grandview Medical Center in Jasper. Among them were at least two patients. The state Democratic Party had fought to get the transcript released before the election, but the transcript—which ran to 679 typed pages—was not complete at the time. The transcript also revealed that contrary to his staunch anti-abortion stance as a congressman, he had counseled his then-wife to have two abortions and pressured one of the patients with whom he’d had an affair to get an abortion. Additional transcripts revealed that he had prescribed pain pills to at least one patient with whom he’d had an affair—a clear conflict of interest.
@Keith G: I really didn’t know how to splain it.
@Keith G: string theory is pretty but it hasn’t had much experimental success
@bemused: My guess is it’s a manifestation of the god complex that some doctors fall prey to — they become wingnut legislators because they think their personal experience is definitive and they presume to know the will of the supreme being.
Others express their arrogance in more conventional ways, such as by treating nurses and ancillary staff like shit.
@raven: Jus goofin
Forgot about this odious creature. Too damn many of them to keep up with!
Yup, I remember sitting in an emergency waiting room watching a doctor strut in pulling off his leather bike gloves. He reeked so much of ego, you smell and see it from 20 yds away.
Dumping rightwing doctors applies to veterinarians too. We haven’t brought our pets to a rural local vet, only a few convenient miles away, in 15+ years. Not since he started writing whacky letters to local paper and found out he believes earth is only a few thousand years old among other usual wingbatty crap. We heard a disgusting story about his practice, thankfully after we had changed vets, from a local who saw a dog she thought was sedated lying in the waiting area. She made a comment about the dog and was told that the dog was dead but they just hadn’t time to remove it!
Michel Martin made a great point in regard to black conservatives on her now cancelled NPR show Tell Me More. She basically said that there was an unspoken agreement between black conservatives like Allen West, Ben Carson, Herman Cain etc in which they get support from white conservatives as long as they repeat claims about blacks being brainwashed and dependent on government. As long as someone like Carson tows the line, he’ll get at least nominal support, but he’ll never come close to winning the nomination, no matter how much he validates white conservatives views of black america.
Though if Carson does run and sticks around awhile, I hope he learns to speak louder and faster.
@bemused: I’ve worked in biomedical research for 25+ years. Once upon a time I thought that MDPhDs were just taking up grad school slots that should go to people who were planning to go into research, not those who might go into research and just wanted more letters after their names. But now I’ve decided that all MDs need to spend some time in research lab to learn How Science Works because obviously a lot of them don’t have a clue. Too many MDs make it through school based on their excellent memories, kind of like Deep Blue playing chess. Here are the symptoms – match that to a list of known diseases with known symptoms.
Being a scientist involves making an observation and asking, “What could explain that?” If someone already knew, it wouldn’t be science. (A well known corollary to that is, “If it always worked, it wouldn’t be science.”) Then you develop a hypothesis and decide what experiments to perform to test the hypothesis, and then you have to analyze the data correctly to form a theory.
Governing is more like being a scientist than being the kind of physician who relies on rote memory – with this exception: Many, if not most of the problems societies face have been faced by other societies who have tried various solutions. We have a record of those attempts that’s called history, and we can apply some of that knowledge to our current problems. Other than that, we have to make the observation, develop a hypothesis (policy,) perform the experiment (apply the policy,) analyze the result (look at and understand the data.)
Physicians like Carson and Frist and Ron Paul have not internalized the scientific method (or never learned it in the first place,) and therefore can’t apply it to anything outside of medicine (if, in fact, they have applied it there, but I would argue that Carson’s and Frist’s careers suggest they were very good doctors.)
DesJarlais is just a sociopath who happens to run in a largely rural, heavily gerrymandered district not known for its stellar school systems.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: The Police Aren’t Under Attack. Institutionalized Racism Is.
Dec. 21, 2014
According to Ecclesiastes, “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose.” For me, today, that means a time to seek justice and a time to mourn the dead.
And a time to shut the hell up.
The recent brutal murder of two Brooklyn police officers, Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu, is a national tragedy that should inspire nationwide mourning. Both my grandfather and father were police officers, so I appreciate what a difficult and dangerous profession law enforcement is. We need to value and celebrate the many officers dedicated to protecting the public and nourishing our justice system. It’s a job most of us don’t have the courage to do.
At the same time, however, we need to understand that their deaths are in no way related to the massive protests against systemic abuses of the justice system as symbolized by the recent deaths—also national tragedies—of Eric Garner, Akai Gurley, and Michael Brown. Ismaaiyl Brinsley, the suicidal killer, wasn’t an impassioned activist expressing political frustration, he was a troubled man who had shot his girlfriend earlier that same day. He even Instagrammed warnings of his violent intentions. None of this is the behavior of a sane man or rational activist. The protests are no more to blame for his actions than The Catcher in the Rye was for the murder of John Lennon or the movie Taxi Driver for the attempted assassination of Ronald Reagan. Crazy has its own twisted logic and it is in no way related to the rational cause-and-effect world the rest of us attempt to create.
@rikyrah: Good to see that from Kareem A-J. Shall read it.
Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism
@NotMax: Better him than this guy.
@OzarkHillbilly: Just cut to the chase; all lives matter.
I wonder how they’ll blame this on Al Sharpton?
@Mustang Bobby: I hope the glasses, pants and keys all went to the proper places.
@pluky: If you make that a slogan, the forced-birthers will latch on to it. Not that they’ll actually mean it for anyone or anything other than embryonic life.
I always liked the formulation “If we knew what we were doing, it wouldn’t be research.”
@Citizen_X: Also true, but a slightly different point.
@greennotGreen: Graduate research programs currently overproduce anyway; our country’s problems with “STEM” are on the demand side, not the supply side. That suggests that education that produces a general population of non-scientists who want there to be science is more important than education that produces more specialists in science.
@Matt McIrvin: Or more scientists in communications and public policy and politics. My former lab produced PhDs who went into clinical research, basic research, bioinformatics in environmental science (not his original field,) scientific communication, and support for graduate studies. IMHO, what we need is more PhDs or masters with a firm foundation in the lab teaching high school. We have way too many people who vote who don’t have basic critical thinking skills, something you must have to survive in a lab.
Have you ever been diagnosed with asthma? I had an ongoing problem with congestion (mostly nasal) that they assumed was allergies, but it turned out to be non-allergic rhinitis that was triggered by my otherwise mild asthma. It may be worth getting checked out.
Tree With Water
“Prosecutors said they expect jury selection to take until about Jan. 20”. That is, jury selection in the murder trial of ex-New England Patriot Aaron Hernandez. Just in time for the Super Bowl. It’s a most appropriate finish to the type of season the NFL has experienced this year. Darn near picture perfect, in fact.
Oh, I disagree. Bush would have to deal with Carson’s utterly insane statements on a daily basis, while Carson is somewhere else making more of them. Bush wants to run as the not-insane adult-in-the-room, and Carson would make that impossible, the way Palin made it impossible for McCain.
@OzarkHillbilly: that seems to be the problem. Conservatives seem to think that if you think black lives matter you’re all for killing cops. So DeBlasio saying we might have a problem here=having blood on his hands.